The Summer Slide (And What You Can Do To Avoid It)

With most teachers out of school for the summer by now, summer learning loss probably isn’t top priority. After all, the kids are back in their parents’ hands for at least a couple of months, right? If the students aren’t in your classroom, there isn’t a whole lot you can do beyond a summer reading list (that the parents may or may not encourage their students to complete, anyway). What you do have to worry about is the amount of catching up you need to do once you have students back in your classroom in the fall. The handy infographic below takes a look at some interesting statistics on summer learning loss, aka the ‘summer slide’. It also offers some really simple ways to keep kids’ brains churning along during their summer break. You can even offer these as simple recommendations to parents, to show them that summer learning doesn’t necessarily mean their kids need to sit down and read all of Dostoevsky’s works before the evenings get chilly!

The Summer Slide (and what you can do to avoid it)

  • 100% of students experience summer learning loss if they don’t engage in some sort of educational activity
  • 25% of academic learning is lost by children during summer vacation, on average
  • It takes teachers about 4-6 weeks to make up for this loss
  • Students lose an average of 2.6 months of math instruction and 2 months of learning in spelling during their summer break
  • 2/3 of the achievement gap among ninth graders can be traced to summer learning loss during their elementary years
  • 3 our of the first 5 years of school is the cumulative impact of summer learning loss

What Can You Do?

Simple activities can keep kids learning while they’re out of school for the summer.

  • Read every day. Read anything and everything: books, magazines, the newspaper, etc. Reading is reading.
  • Cook with your children: It integrates reading, math, and following directions
  • Enroll in a quality summer camp: It can help children with their critical thinking skills, among other things (depending on the type of camp)
  • Plan a trip: Using tools like Google maps allows students to use math, geography, etc
  • Use Apps: There are tons of educational games out there – use them!


summer slide